On the morning of Tuesday October 16, 1962, President John F. Kennedy was reading the Tuesday morning newspapers in his bed at the Whitehouse. Not twenty fours hours before, McGeorge Bundy, Kennedy's national security adviser, received the results of Major Richard S. Heyser's U-2 mission over San Cristobal Cuba. In light of recent mysterious Soviet and Cuban activities developing in the Caribbean Sea and Atlantic Ocean, the president's administration had given the order to conduct reconnaissance missions over the island of Cuba. In particular a fifty-mile trapezoidal swath of territory in western Cuba was to be looked upon under intense scrutiny. A CIA agent reported in the second week of September that this stretch of land was being guarded closely by Peruvian, Colombian, and actual Soviet soldiers. There was a real reason to be suspicious of the activity in western Cuba. The first of this U-2 reconnaissance mission would reveal a shocking discovery.(Chang & William p.33-47)
The U-2 reconnaissance reports that Bundy received in full detail two 70-foot-long MRBMs at San Cristobal. The news that Bundy would eventually have to expose to President Kennedy would sound alarms not just in his administration or in the United States of America, but throughout the entire world. Bundy did not tell the president that night. He opted to allow him a good night's rest, the last he would have for some time, as it turned out. Bundy felt there was nothing the president could do about the missiles that night anyway, and he would need to be sharp the next morning.(Brugioni p.68) Besides Bundy and the leadership of the U.S. intelligence community, Dean Rusk and his team at State, as well as McNamara and the deputy secretary of defense, Roswell Gilpatric, received word of the U-2's discovery before going to bed on October 15. Kennedy's discovery of the missiles could wait till the next morning.(May & Zelikow p.24)
Thus on the morning of ...
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